Performance | May 1, 2019
How to nurture talent like AFC Ajax; if your team’s broken, don’t just paper over the cracks; use your strengths more wisely and see the impact.

G’day everyone and welcome to another bi-weekly sports performance digest. Coming at you with a bundle of insight, a plethora of stories and an attention to detail more accurate than a Manchester City goal at Turf Moor. Sigh. Let’s go…

5 questions, answered

  1. Who’s the most important member of an NFL franchise?

HBR has the answer.

One member who is very important to an NFL franchise is the Falcons’ Thomas Dimitroff, and you can hear from him and all our other great speakers in Atlanta on June 25-26. Get involved and register your interest!

  1. Can your greatest strengths also be your greatest weaknesses?

It seems they can. Adam Grant explains why it will pay to use your strengths more wisely, rather than more often.

  1. What does the world’s greatest talent factory look like?

Hop on a flight to Amsterdam and ask AFC Ajax. They’ve produced yet another crop of the world’s best young footballers. And former pupil Jan Vertonghen isn’t surprised at the new kids on the block.

  1. What do you do when your team is broken?

List the problems; debug the cycles; define the constraints. Good luck!

  1. 1st the worst, 2nd the best, 3rd happier with bronze rather than silver on their chest?

A long winded question with a slightly forced rhyme, yes. But, a valid point and interesting piece. Is coming third have less psychological impact than coming second? New insights from the 2016 Olympics, here.

The Digest, Digested

It’s a numbers game

1 Bills Drive…

…is probably one of the best facilities in the world

5 myths…

…about strategy

3 hard choices…

…you must make to succeed

Players who tweeted between 11pm and 7am…

…scored fewer points. Sleep is important.

3 tips on making…

faster and better decisions

8 common…

sleep myths debunked

Spur of the moment

Tottenham Hotspur FC have been berated for their lack of activity in recent transfer windows. But with one of the youngest squads in the league, why sign new players when your current crop hasn’t reached its peak yet? This is a case for patience and perseverance, well-articulated by Ben Marlow of 21st Club.

The honest truth

A recent study of more than 3200 leaders on organisational honesty revealed some interesting findings on whether people withhold or distort the truth within an organisation. Clarity, accountability and collaboration are all pieces of ancient wisdom we should maybe have taken note of. We should have listened to Socrates (the philosopher, not the Brazilian footballer…), after all.

Winning with style

Arsenal won their first Women’s Super League title in seven years at the weekend, and in a time where team building trips with the SAS have been the latest craze, it appeared a simple yet effective style of management won the race this year. Forza!

Wining and dining

Amongst all the incredible leadership lessons that Coach Popovich has taught us across his career, it’s also known that his secret sauce is good food and even better wine. While not all of this article may be gospel, there is no doubt that the one of the NBA’s greatest ever coaches knows the ingredients to success, time after time.

Mind the gender data gap

Despite being half of the global population, women are not seen as the default in the same way in which men are. That’s the view of Caroline Criado-Perez, and if you look at the stats and the lack of diversity when collecting sport science data, you can see why.

Mental Health – let’s talk about it.


Not a member of the Leaders Performance Institute? More fool you if the answer is no. Here’s our snazzy new video to tell you why you should join us and 250 other teams in our network.


Is creativity a mystery to you or your organisation? This podcast shares some thoughts from London Business School and IDEO on how to foster creativity.

If you enjoyed that, then have a watch of this session from our Chicago 2018 event where IDEO’s Jen Panasik discusses creativity as a key modern leadership trait.


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